IF Statements: The Simple & Penalty Free Way To Increase Your Ad Relevance

IF Statements: The Simple & Penalty Free Way To Increase Your Ad Relevance

Monday, March 06, 2017

Google IF Functions: What are They?

This recently rolled out Ad Customizer allows highly relevant creatives to be customized according to user context.

Unlike your classic keyword insertion customizers extracted from Spreadsheets and maintained in the Business Data section of AdWords, IF Functions are simple, requiring no feed or additional set up, running in a similar manner to your standard countdown function.

IF functions allow you to insert a specific message in your text ads when a condition is met, and a default text when it is not.

Currently Google allows 1 of 2 Conditions.

  1. Device Type
  2. Audience List


IF functions can be used anywhere in an Expanded Text Ad, except for the final URL. They are only eligible to run on the Search Network.

You can’t add two IF functions into the same field as it would just confuse AdWords, and result in your ads being disapproved.

The Syntax

Like existing Ad Customizers, IF statements itself exists within curly brackets, {}.

Within those brackets, you’ll start with,


You’ll then fill in the conditional argument within the parentheses.


The modified text follows the comma after your first argument.

{=IF(device=mobile, Shop From Your Phone)}

After which you include your default text, placed after a colon.

={=IF(device=mobile,Shop From Your Phone):Shop Online and Save}

The above can be reduced to the following

={=IF(condition, alternate text):default text}

For multiple arguments, you would modify this slightly to,

{=IF(condition IN(option 1, option 2, option 3), alternate text): default text}

How it looks in the Engine

Screen Shot 2017-03-06 at 12.35.58

How it looks in the SERP


Screen Shot 2017-03-06 at 12.35.45 The Benefits

Separating Campaigns by Audience or Device will continue to allow greater control over your Creative and Final URL. However, it may result in historical data loss and campaign management overhead.

IF statements allow you to adapt your creatives easy with minimal set up time or opportunity cost.

Potential Areas of Implementation

  • Mobile specific message
  • Sync ad copy with email messaging for your newsletter subscribers
  • Highlight recent updates or available accessories to previous purchasers

At DAC, we highly recommend making IF statements a key element of your creative infrastructure.